ALBANY, NY — The New York State Police will increase patrols to combat drunk, impaired, and reckless driving throughout this Memorial Day weekend. The special enforcement period starts on Friday, May 26, 2023, and runs through Tuesday, May 30, 2023. Memorial Day is one of the busiest travel holidays of the year and police will be out in force to remove impaired and reckless drivers from our highways.
New York State Police Acting Superintendent Steven A. Nigrelli said, “On Memorial Day, we take time to honor the brave men and women who died in service to our county, remembering the sacrifice they made for all of us. If your Memorial Day weekend celebrations include alcohol, remember to make safety your top priority and arrange for a safe ride home. Wear your seat belt, remain alert and above all, drive sober. Troopers will be highly visible this weekend and will have zero tolerance for impaired and reckless drivers.”
New York State Department of Motor Vehicles Commissioner and Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee Chair Mark J.F. Schroeder said, “I thank and commend New York State Police and all our other law enforcement agencies for their commitment to keeping our roadways as safe as possible. There will be a lot of traffic on the road during Memorial Day weekend as the summer travel season begins. If you are going to be drinking or using drugs, please do not drive. Have a plan to designate a driver or arrange for a ride. We want everyone to enjoy a safe and happy holiday weekend, without having their memories marred by a needless tragedy.”
Drivers can expect to see sobriety checkpoints and increased patrols by State Police and local law enforcement agencies during this holiday weekend. Troopers will be using both marked State Police vehicles and Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) vehicles as part of this crackdown to more easily identify motorists who are violating the law. CITE vehicles allow the Trooper to better observe driving violations. These vehicles blend in with everyday traffic but are unmistakable as emergency vehicles once the emergency lighting is activated.
According to the Institute for Traffic Safety Management and Research (ITSMR) at the University at Albany, 237 people were killed and 4,394 were injured in drunk driving related crashes in 2022. Another 237 people were killed in drug-related crashes.
This initiative is partially funded by the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC). The GTSC and the New York State STOP-DWI Foundation remind motorists that their “Have a Plan” mobile app is available for Apple, Droid and Windows smartphones. The app enables New Yorkers to locate and call a taxi service and program a designated driver list. It also provides information on DWI laws and penalties, and a way to even report a suspected impaired driver.
On Memorial Day weekend in 2022, Troopers arrested 213 people for driving while impaired, issued 13,688 total tickets, and investigated 808 crashes, which resulted in four fatalities.